Calgary inmate sentenced for remand assault during strike
Attack happened during wildcat guard strike in Calgary Remand Centre
A Calgary man will spend nine more months in jail for an attack on another inmate during a wildcat strike by guards.
Surveillance video shows Jamal McArthur was beaten for about six minutes last April before two RCMP officers happened to walk by and spot the injured man.
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Chase Neault and Riley Boland were both charged with aggravated assault. Neault pleaded guilty on Monday and was sentenced to 18 months in jail. He has already served nine months of that time.
The assault happened in the gym area of the centre in front of a post usually staffed by guards. At the time, they were on strike and RCMP took over the job of policing inmates.
"In fairness to them, they were parachuted into a war zone," said Neault's lawyer Maggie O'Shaughnessy.
The remand centre was in a state of chaos during the strike, she said.
"I was getting phone calls [from clients and] I could hear screaming in the background, fights in the background," said O'Shaughnessy. "Nobody in charge and then the government giving media talks about how everything was just fine."
O'Shaughnessy said the attack wouldn't have been nearly as bad if guards had been in charge at the time.
"Although people were trying their best, obviously the government was not prepared for the wildcat strike," she said.
McArthur suffered a broken nose. Several bones around his eye were shattered and required surgery.
After pleading guilty, Neault apologized for his actions.
"I feel ashamed. I know I'm a better person than that," he said. "It will never happen again."
Neither the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees, which represented the guards, nor the RCMP would comment on the conditions at the remand centre during the strike.
Boland pleaded guilty in October to aggravated assault and will be sentenced on Wednesday.